Bike Run-in Period: Some Do’s and Dont’s

You must all have heard about the term bike run-in period (or break-in period). Let us, in this article, quickly talk about its details.

In simple terms this is the period where you need to take utmost care of your Bike’s engine, and the dealer and the manufacturer will advice you not to rev hard, and stay within specific rpm limits till you reach a specified mileage.

Bike Run-in Period – What is it?

How long I need to wait?: Most manufactures mention 1000-2000 kilometers as the run-in period. So, this is the time when you should be extra careful about your newly acquired motorcycle.

Do all the bikes’ engines break in exactly at the particular kilometers mentioned in the manual?: Do you think an FZ’s or a Pulsar’s engine settles exactly at the time you cross 1000/2000 kilometer on the odometer? No, the engine settles down during these first few hundred kilometers. The kilometers mentioned in the manual are reference points. During this period, your bike’s engine and other core parts start living up in this harsh world it is put into.

Why Run-in or Break-in is required?: It’s a new bike; all internal core components such as cylinder, piston, etc are brand new and the bike may done hardly a few kilometers before it reaches you; hence the engine needs to settle down making things inside it smoother.

They set everything and do all sort of QC checks then why do I need to run-in again? All moving parts of the engine are manufactured in such a way to fit precisely with one another while it is running. But in real time (practical term) this can be done after you run-in the bike for certain kilometers, during the run in period these moving parts rub against each other, get polished and they get synchronised perfectly. During this period lubricant plays a vital role by setting a thin coat of lubrication on all engine parts.

So one should handle the bike in a gentle way. If you rev it hard to reach the red line in the run in period it will make more metal to metal contact resulting in higher wear and tear which may have grave repercussions in the longer running of your motorcycle. So, proper break in provides longer engine life.

Hey wait I read it some where on net on how to break in / run in can be done in overnight or within a day. Is that true? Yes, that is. But not for all. On those sites they advise to rev hard and harsh on all the gears so as the engine will break in with in hours.

That is applicable only for race bikes; a race bike can’t wait for 1500 kilometers to win a race because those bikes have to run faster but those super bikes engines have shorter life span and in the race biker’s world there is no word called mileage

How to do a Proper Break-In

The following are the key points to break in…

  • Never stress the engine.
  • Refer your bike’s manual and abide by the speeds mentioned.
  • Do not ride on constant speeds for a long time. Instead of sticking to 45 kmph try to vary it between 40 to 50 kmph.
  • If possible try to avoid steep/hilly terrains.
  • Give regular breaks during long drives.
  • Accelerate and de-accelerate smoothly. Avoid jerks.
  • Try to avoid heavy pillion rider because that will stress the engine.

Do’s and Don’ts of Engine Oil

  • During break in period engine oil change duration is shorter, so check the level, quality and quantity of engine oil regularly.
  • Try to use company recommended mineral or semi synthetic oils during the run in period only. Moving parts of an engine need to rub and get polished against each other; fully synthetic oil has high lubricating properties thus it may result in uneven settling of engine parts.

bike run-in period

  • Be careful in engine oil changing intervals during run in period.
  • Early engine oil change (even if it hasn’t lost its colour and viscosity) will rid you of any metal scraps that get brushed during first rides.
  • If recommended by the manufacturer, also ensure you change your oil filter.

Remember, more than the outright speed, it is the rpm that is more important. No matter how irresistible it is, but try not to over-rev the engine at any time during running-in. This will ensure a healthy running of your motorcycle.

This story is shared with us by Madhu Sudhanan NS. You can also get featured at BikeAdvice by sharing informative and engaging content here.